Interactions of Vertical Handoffs with 802.11b wireless LANs : Handoff Policy
Nomadic computing aims to be a leading short term revolution in the Internet, however to succeed in this the infrastructure, the protocols, the handoff mechanisms have to be designed and implemented to provide mobile computing with both reliability and transparency.
A good deal of the work is addressed by mobile IP itself, but addressing wireless diversity is perhaps the most important next step. Many different wireless technologies are available; while one technology might provide wide coverage, another provides higher bandwidth, but can only be deployed locally, even uni-directional ad-hoc links can be used to carry IP traffic. To take full advantage of the potential infrastructure, a mobile device, with multiple network interfaces, should be able to dynamically switch from one link technology to another; hopefully totally transparently to the user. Moreover, having multiple interfaces allows the device to choose, each time a new connection is established, which interface to select to route the datagrams through, based on the type of service desired.
In this thesis a possible solution is presented, involving both vertical handoff optimization and policy management. Our testing device is the the SmartBadge v4, provided with a GPRS link and a 802.11b WLAN interface.
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